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Michael Tucker

Chelsea 2 Arsenal 0

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Sea foot   

I think that he will, but I'll more comfortable if he's played behind the striker, and not deep alongside Matic. Back there (and without Ramires) his lack of pace gets exposed, and I think that's what Arsenal will be hoping for. So for me, I'd like to see Fabregas as a No.10, and Mikel alongside Matic.

I agree with putting Mikel alongside Matic but for his defensive qualities rather than any perceived injection of pace over Fabregas.

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I agree with putting Mikel alongside Matic but for his defensive qualities rather than any perceived injection of pace over Fabregas.

I didn't say that he'd inject more pace than Fabregas. My point was simply that Fabregas was more likely to be effective, and less likely to have his lack of pace exposed, if he plays up-field as a No.10. With him up there, and Ramires unavailable, the obvious choice to partner Matic is Mikel.......yes, for his ability and experience as a DM, and the fact that he holds his position (which would allow Matic more freedom of movement).

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Most likely line up in my opinion is Courtois, Dave, Terry, Cahill, Ivanovic - Matic,Fabregas - Haz,Oscar,Willian - Costa

Nothing unexpected there obviously. Those are the players that delivered the best performances this season.

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I didn't say that he'd inject more pace than Fabregas. My point was simply that Fabregas was more likely to be effective, and less likely to have his lack of pace exposed, if he plays up-field as a No.10. With him up there, and Ramires unavailable, the obvious choice to partner Matic is Mikel.......yes, for his ability and experience as a DM, and the fact that he holds his position (which would allow Matic more freedom of movement).

Starting Mikel at the expense of Oscar is too conservative, in my opinion. Our central midfield would be dead - less creativity and no impetus on the break. Mikel is the kind of player you bring on when you want to hold on to a lead, not when it's 0-0. I know it's Arsenal, but we should be going for the win and our starting line up has to reflect this. We have to risk a bit more.

Before you get me wrong - I am not saying there is no way we could win with Mikel in the starting line up, but our counter attacking play would be dampened.

Edit: Also, as others have mentioned, the more Arsenal players are busy with Fabregas in the middle, the more space they leave behind for Hazard. If Fabregas plays along Hazard in the attacking part of the pitch, they won't open up as much space, theoretically.

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Scooba   

Most likely line up in my opinion is Courtois, Dave, Terry, Cahill, Ivanovic - Matic,Fabregas - Haz,Oscar,Willian - Costa

Nothing unexpected there obviously. Those are the players that delivered the best performances this season.

This is will be the team 100%. Jose won't gift Mikel his first start in the premier league this season at home to arsenal. There's no need, Fabregas - Matic will dominate anyway.

We will win this comfortably and people will come on here raving about how good we are when really it is a game that 9/10 we win and if we are serious about the premier league this season, these games are a routine win.

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Agreed regarding Mikel. I would not start him tomorrow.

Arsenal are vulnerable defensively. We should set up to take advantage of that, not letting them off the hook.

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bluereed   

I, like other posters think this match could be more difficult than last season. Sanchez is the worry for me and WElbeck is on a roll at the moment5. Also Fabregas has been a fantastic creative midfielder for us this season but I hope he doesn't come over all sentimental against his old club and go on the missing list. We need a proffessional performance from him.This is a big match make no mistake about that. A 1-0 victory would do me. Here's hoping...fingers crossed...COME ON YOU BLUES!!!

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Don't worry about Cesc being overawed by playing against the Arse, he's as professional as our Frank. Just don't expect him to celebrate any goals.

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Don't worry about Cesc being overawed by playing against the Arse, he's as professional as our Frank. Just don't expect him to celebrate any goals.

Whether he celebrates or not - we can be certain that he will be about to burst of happiness.

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Harvz   

Don't worry about Cesc being overawed by playing against the Arse, he's as professional as our Frank. Just don't expect him to celebrate any goals.

I'll be disappointed if he scores and doesn't at least give the post a little dry hump.

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